A special scholarship fund created through a solar power partnership is helping area high school students access advanced courses through a dual-enrollment program.
CHARLOTTESVILLE and VIRGINIA BEACH, Va., Sept. 26, 2023 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ — Mid-Atlantic clean energy company Sun Tribe and Virginia Beach City Public Schools (VBCPS) have announced that 67 of the district’s high school students received scholarships for dual-enrollment technical courses at Tidewater Community College (TCC) for the 2023-2024 school year.
VBCPS and Sun Tribe launched the merit- and need-based scholarship program in 2022 as an extension of a partnership that has brought rooftop solar panels to several of the district’s schools. They are proud to report that every student who has applied for assistance thus far has received tuition assistance, including an additional 60 students from the 2022-2023 school year.
Scholarship recipients include juniors and seniors representing all VBCPS high schools. These students take courses at TCC as part of a dual-enrollment program that enables them to access cutting-edge technical training while earning both high school and college credit. This allows high schoolers to explore various career paths and earn valuable industry accreditations or certifications before graduating.
VBCPS supports programs accessible to all students, regardless of financial status. College tuition can be a barrier for families, as high schoolers are not eligible for traditional financial aid. Thanks to this scholarship program, students have tuition-free access to skills-based training and certificate programs.
“When we first teamed up with VBCPS to bring solar power to their schools, we were both set on finding creative new ways to expand the benefits felt by the community. This scholarship program has been an incredibly rewarding way to do that,” said Rich Allevi, Vice President of Development at Sun Tribe. “We are grateful to both the school district and Tidewater Community College for working with us to empower these students and provide a stepping stone toward enriching careers.”
Sun Tribe contributed a grant to fund the VBCPS dual-enrollment scholarship and arranged for a matching contribution from Tidewater Community College. This year’s scholarship students are attending a range of courses for certificate programs in welding, veterinary assisting, and lodging management for a total of 406 tuition-free credit hours.
“Our partnership with Sun Tribe is an integral part of Virginia Beach Schools’ work to build tomorrow’s workforce in our region,” said Sara Lockett, Director of Technical and Career Education at VBCPS. “Sun Tribe is helping to open the door to successful and fulfilling futures in Hampton Roads for our students.”
VBCPS is a leader in its energy management and environmental stewardship approach. Beginning in 2019, the district partnered with Sun Tribe to develop solar at four of its schools.
To learn more about Sun Tribe and its work with K-12 schools, visit https://suntribesolar.com/k-12-schools/.